Two of the most well-liked e-ink tablets available are the Supernote vs Remarkable 2 (both of which are listed in my Top 5 recommendations).
Which, though, is the best?
To assist buyers in selecting the best gadget for them, I will be thoroughly examining each of the devices and ranking them according to a variety of different factors in this article.
While Android tablets like Amazon’s Fire and iPads continue to rule the tablet market, there are still some specialised goods vying for your attention.
It’s time to take a look at the expanding category of e-ink tablets, which aims to make note-taking simpler for everyone, from professionals to students. E-ink tablets are relatively new to the market compared to the age of the tablet as we know it today, making their first significant appearance around the end of 2016.
The e-ink tablet is a digital notebook that can replace your paper notebook when you write or doodle. If you’re unfamiliar with this category, consider it a digital notebook. As opposed to tablets like the iPad, which have a million apps, e-ink tablets are a distraction-free environment because they do one thing well instead of a million different things at the same time.
See which is the better option for most people by comparing two e-ink giants with the reMarkable 2 and the Supernote tablet.
What’s the difference between Supernote vs Remarkable 2 ?
In terms of price, e-ink tablets aren’t too different from Android or Apple tablets.
Among the models offered by reMarkable, the reMarkable 2 costs $299 for a single tablet. It also offers refurbished tablets for $279, and says these are returned during a risk-free trial period. This trial period alludes to reMarkable’s 100-day satisfaction guarantee where you can try the product, and if you don’t love it, you can return it for a full refund.
This pricing only includes the hardware, as the Marker, as reMarkable refers to it, is available for an additional fee.
reMarkable offers two different Marker options with the Marker and Marker Plus. The Marker is available for $79, weighs 15 grams, and doesn’t come with an eraser built in. A black version of the Marker Plus costs $129 and weighs 19 grams. It also includes an eraser built in. The reMarkable 2 is magnetically connected to either pen, which requires no charging or setup.
According to the pricing of the Supernote X series, you have two size options.
The less expensive of the two options is the Supernote A6 X, which is the smaller of the two available options. The 7.8-inch display of the A6 X will cost $299 plus applicable shipping and taxes. For $415 plus applicable shipping and taxes, you can get the larger Supernote A5X. A pen or folio is not included with either size.
To get a pen for the Supernote X lineup, you have to opt not just for the pen but also for a folio and a package deal. The least expensive way to do that is to opt for the Supernote X Series Standard Set which is $385 before shipping and taxes. You can also choose between a Canvas Grey or Canvas Blue folio color. Pricing for the A5 X includes the same color options but the larger size increases the price to $514 before shipping and taxes.
The Reading (Supernote vs Remarkable 2)
Although neither the reMarkable 2 nor the Supernote A5/A6 X will beat a dedicated Kindle as an e-reader, they use similar e-ink technology so e-reading should be similar between them. In fact, reMarkable even attempts to sell customers on the paper-like reading experience you can get with their devices.
Unfortunately, the reMarkable promise doesn’t often correspond to the actual experience because using a 10.3-inch smartphone as an e-reader is challenging. The reMarkable 2 works far better and more comfortably as a PDF reader than it does as an e-reader.
Using Supernote X, things take a turn for the better. Supernote has its own e-reading application that is very useful and it also supports the Kindle app, which is a huge advantage. The Supernote was also upgraded dramatically in December 2021, improving its ability to handle books with images and sped up PDF reading. Points for Supernote in this category.
Among the biggest differences between reMarkable 2 and Supernote X is software. The former runs on Linux, while the latter runs on Android. Due to Android support, Supernote A5X and A6X are able to include the Kindle app for reading. The app simply needs to be loaded without Supernote doing anything extra.
ReMarkable 2 is a really nice program, and on the home screen, there is a sidebar that contains all of your shortcuts and features. The sidebar contains notes, eBooks, PDF files, and more. One big win for reMarkable users with its software is that it integrates with Google Chrome through a plugin that allows users to save articles for reading later on the reMarkable 2.
As far as the Supernote X series goes, it offers similarly strong software and the use of Android provides hope for more app support coming in the future. In fact, it’s the future of Supernote that may be one most underrated aspect as the company is extremely transparent about what is coming. Supernote posts its software roadmap publicly and provides timing for future updates, bug fixes, and new features. Add in a best-in-class e-reading experience as well as a wide selection of custom fonts and different note templates. Pinch-to-zoom does work better on the Supernote over the reMarkable 2, which is a small but important detail that gives the former a big advantage.
There is slim hardware in both the reMarkable 2 and Supernote X series. Despite being similar in size and weight to a traditional Android or iPad tablet, both devices feel equally good in your hands and do not add much weight to a backpack or carry-on bag. It feels like writing on paper, and that sensation makes using both the Supernote X and reMarkable 2 feel really natural.
There is a lot of similarity between the Supernote A5X and the reMarkable 2, but the reMarkable 2 feels a little stronger in the hand. It also feels a little more sturdy in terms of build quality. The Supernote doesn’t feel like it’s going to break if you drop it — on the contrary — but when comparing the two devices side by side, it’s likely that most people will find the reMarkable 2 to be more durable.
One of the primary niceties of the Supernote X hardware is on the right-hand side where there is a small groove next to the screen. It’s in this spot where your thumb can quickly wake up the screen by swiping up. Getting the tablet up quickly should be easy, even if you only want to jot something down. You can easily access all the Supernote’s main features by swiping down in the same spot.
Supernote X vs. reMarkable 2: 5 things you need to know
There is only one size of the reMarkable 2 at 10.3 inches, while the Supernote A5X has a 10.3-inch screen and the A6X has a 7.8-inch screen.
In both the reMarkable 2 and Supernote X series, pens are not included with the initial purchase. Each pen must be purchased separately, increasing the overall price.
reMarkable 2 requires a subscription called Connect to access Cloud services, otherwise notes are only stored for 50 days.
Neither the Supernote A5X nor Supernote A6X require a subscription and can backup all data using Supernote’s cloud services or a third-party like Dropbox.
A detailed public roadmap is provided by Supernote for all upcoming software updates and changes.
reMarkable 2 vs. Supernote X: Which is Better?
These two products do the same thing, and that is to create an e-ink experience to take notes, read PDF files, and double as an e-reader.
When it comes to writing notes, the reMarkable 2 might have a slight edge as its Wacom-based pen offers a best-in-class experience.
It’s likely that the reMarkable 2 is the better option, even when added a pen, even though Supernote gets points for its transparent list of future updates.
You should take note of this e-ink tablet
Let’s start with the positives. After using the e-ink tablet for over a month, I am still impressed by the endless templates for customized use — whether it is for notes, calendars, or general organization — as well as the various pen settings, including a fine liner, marker, and calligraphy pen. Aside from adjusting the color and thickness of each pen stroke, the interface also allowed me to highlight text for later recall.
I’m also happy to discover that I can add numerous levels to a document or move pages around to create notes that are more unified. Similar functionality is provided by the competitive ReMarkable 2 tablet, however when you take into account the stylus and case that must be purchased separately, it is also more expensive. The moveable taskbar and the Supernote’s ability to label and search titles are some other characteristics that are similar. These capabilities are useful when trying to recall, for example, an action plan from a meeting last week.
A lot of inspiration was taken from more-popular e-ink tablets on the market when it comes to erasing text. I could choose from erasing small typos to removing entire sections using the taskbar.
Despite being so affordable, it isn’t perfect. One issue I had with the tablet was that it sometimes lagged mid-stroke while I wrote, even though the input caught up seconds later. I experienced these moments rarely, and every time they happened it was when I scribbled quickly on the tablet. However, if you write fast or for speed naturally, the lag can be a minor inconvenience that becomes a real issue.
Also, I don’t like the fact that the battery status is hidden in the settings menu. (At least make it visible!) That’s really the only issue I have with the Supernote. The tablet’s battery level had only dropped to 62% after over a month of continuous use — with approximately an hour to two a day.
Speaking of longevity, I was equally delighted to see that I could edit Microsoft Word documents on the A5 X and upload them to two separate cloud storage services — Dropbox and Supernote. In addition to reading books from Amazon’s Kindle service, the tablet can be used as an e-reader, create security passcodes, and adjust the display input and calibration.
Students and office workers may find the Supernote pricey at a starting price of $299. For more recommendations, check out ZDNET’s rankings of the best digital writing tablets. If you are a tactile learner and most productive when jotting down notes, this e-ink tablet is worth the investment.
Become a Subscriber
For better or worse, reMarkable decided to switch to Connect, a paywall-based service, in late 2021. You must pay for reMarkable 2’s cloud-based service in addition to the cost of the tablet and the plan if you want to use all of its features.
Connect does come with a free 1-year trial, but after the trial expires, you will have to pay $2.99 per month. Connect subscribers are entitled to unlimited cloud storage for all of their notes, hardware support for three years, and exclusive offers. Mobile and desktop note-taking is indicated as “coming soon” by reMarkable.
Owners of reMarkable 2 devices will only have access to 50 days’ worth of note history between the device and cloud storage if they decide not to sign up for the Connect service.
In contrast to reMarkable, Supernote has created the A5 X and A6 X that do not require a subscription. Using the company’s web client or the downloadable iOS, Android, and iPad apps, you can access all of your notes via the cloud. In addition, Supernote supports third-party cloud services such as Dropbox, which allows you to back up your Supernote work to your own storage space.
Creating and Building
The Supernote and reMarkable are both robust and well-built devices, but I think the reMarkable looks sleeker and more elegant when placed side-by-side.
The reMarkable just seems more premium; this could be due to its shiny metal ‘spine’ on the left-hand side, smooth edges, or the fact that it is the thinnest e-ink tablet on the market.
In contrast, the Supernote is 7.2mm thick and the edges run at right angles to each other, which makes it feel a bit chunky. Due to its plastic casing, it weighs just 375g, compared with the reMarkable’s 405g, making it one of the lightest tablets on the market.
As far as their physical footprint is concerned, they both have about the same height at 245mm, but the reMarkable is about 1cm wider (around the width of its metal spine).
There are some small details on the reMarkable that appear to be missing from the Supernote, like the rubber feet on the rear panel to prevent the device from slipping. Nevertheless, Supernote’s design appears to have been more practical. A side touch slider on the right bezel, for example, can be used to access a quick-access menu or refresh the screen on the Supernote.
A groove on the rear panel allows the Supernote to be attached to a cover/folio. The reMarkable folio has magnets to hold the tablet in place.
Moreover, since the reMarkable is magnetic, the stylus can be snapped to the side. While the Supernote stylus is magnetic, the tablet itself is not. Therefore, a case/folio with a pen loop is needed to keep them together.
In summary, both reMarkable and Supernote are well-designed, sturdy tablets, but subjectively, the reMarkable seems to have a more luxurious feel.
This section relates to the organisational features of the Supernote and reMarkable ecosystems. Each proprietary file system offers organisational features within notebooks, as well as the ease of transferring files to and from the tablet.
Using reMarkable, you can manage your files by hierarchical folders and subfolders. You can also sort files by name, last modified, last accessed, type, size, and number of pages. You can also tag files as favourites or with your own customized keywords. Finally, there is a search option, but only by file/folder name, not by keyword or tag.
The Supernote uses a similar folder/sub-folder hierarchy and files can be sorted by name, modified date and size. Files can also be flagged as favourites. The Supernote keywords are set at the notebook page level, whereas the reMarkable tags and keywords are set at the notebook level. You can also search for stars in your notebooks by searching by folder/filename, file type, and keyword. There is a more advanced search function that will search by folder/filename, file type, and keywords.
One of the things I love about using the Supernote is how it organizes and structures notebooks. By pressing the Navigation Window button on the toolbar in a notebook, you are shown a list of the most important parts of your notebook. There is a Contents tab which shows all the handwriting you have tagged as a Title. and a Keywords tab for any handwriting you have tagged with a particular keyword. To tag handwriting as a title or keyword, you simply lasso it with the selection tool and select T or title or K for keyword. There is also a Stars tab, which lists all the pages where you have drawn a five-pointed star – this is a quick and easy way to mark a page as important with your stylus. Overall, these functions make navigating your notebooks very quick and very easy.
On both Supernote and reMarkable, you can use the page overview button to quickly view several notebook pages at once. You can also copy, move, delete, and insert notebook pages using this tool.
In Supernote, navigation is made even easier with the side touch slider. Quick access menus are accessible at any time by swiping down with your finger. The menu includes buttons for recent files, last opened notes, last opened documents, new notes, apps, and settings. Adding notebooks/documents that you use the most can also be customized.
Notebooks and documents can be synchronized with the manufacturers’ proprietary clouds with Supernote and reMarkable. The manufacturer’s companion apps, the Supernote Partner App and the reMarkable App, let you access your files. In addition to web browsers and Android and iOS mobile apps, reMarkable also has a desktop application (Windows and Mac).
The reMarkable app is the more polished of the two and runs quicker. Both allow you to view your notebooks and documents and download/share them as PDF files. The Supernote also has the option to download notebooks in PNG format. You can also upload and import files to the tablet using both apps. reMarkable is the only manufacturer that allows you to create and edit your notebooks through their companion app, however, there are a couple of caveats. Firstly, you have to be subscribed to their Connect service (with an additional cost of around $3 per month) and secondly, you can only insert typed text using the app (you can’t scribble or freehand write). The Supernote app supports LAN transfers, which means that you can transfer files between the tablet and other devices over a local network (without using the Internet). reMarkable also has the Read on reMarkable Google Chrome extension, which is a button you can press to send webpages to read on your tablet in PDF format. There is also an integration with Office365, which allows you to send Word and Powerpoint files to read on your tablet in PDF format.
In addition to Google Drive and Dropbox integration, the reMarkable also integrates with OneDrive. However, their implementations are different. With the reMarkable, you can browse your cloud drive and manually upload and download documents (notebooks are uploaded in PDF format). When you click the sync button on the Supernote, a copy of every document and notebook is created on the cloud drive.
The reMarkable does it better because you can select which files you wish to transfer to the cloud each time. With the Supernote, notebooks are transferred in their proprietary .NOTE format, which means they cannot be opened on any non-Supernote device. You can export notebooks as PDFs beforehand and these will be synced with the cloud but this is a manual operation (and you have to remember to do it each time you update a notebook). In addition, you can only set up synchronisation with one cloud, which means that if you configure Google Drive for example, your files will no longer sync with the Supernote Cloud (and the companion app becomes useless). The Supernote also does not have automatic synchronisation so you also have to remember to manually tap the sync button.
You can export and send notebooks and files using the reMarkable tablet in PDF, PNG, SVG, and text formats via email. While Supernote supports exporting files as PNG, PDF, TXT, and DOCX, the files are exported to the Export folder, which is then synced with your cloud drive.
While it is possible to transfer files via USB on the reMarkable, this method is unsupported and cumbersome.
The Supernote, in my opinion, offers the best features for organizing and navigating files and notebooks. The reMarkable, on the other hand, provides a few more file transfer options and feels cleaner overall.
This section will begin by describing the very different tactile feel of writing between these two e-ink tablets.
The reMarkable stylus is long and thin and resembles a pencil. It also has a pencil-like feel when writing on the textured screen and makes a satisfying scratching sound. It has a soft nib and reMarkable has done an excellent job of implementing both pressure and tilt sensitivity. The stylus makes heavier strokes with a harder press, while tilting the stylus makes thicker strokes similar to shading.
In contrast, the Supernote does not implement pressure and tilt sensitivity well and the writing experience doesn’t feel like pencil on paper – it feels more like a premium ballpoint pen on plastic. Nevertheless, the stylus does not feel as though it is sliding around as it might on an LCD screen due to some friction between the hard ceramic nib and the plastic screen. As well as the pleasurable tapping sound when you write, the screen also makes very accurate marks.
So the writing experiences on both the Supernote and the reMarkable are delightful but also very different. I enjoy writing on the Supernote because it actually energizes me when I use it. However, if I’m sketching, I’d typically use the reMarkable.
As for the native note-taking app, the reMarkable has more brushes/pens to choose from; ballpoint, fineliner, marker, pencil, mechanical pencil, paintbrush, highlighter, and calligraphy pen, while the Supernote only provides ballpoint, needlepoint, and highlighters.
Both the reMarkable and the Supernote have an eraser (standard and selection), undo, and redo buttons, and a lasso selection tool. When selecting handwriting, reMarkable allows you to cut, copy, paste, move, resize, and rotate it. In addition to these options, you can also add links to notebooks, notebook pages, and websites, as well as tag it as a title/keyword, and add it to your calendar.
In Supernote notebooks, there is no option for inserting text using the on-screen keyboard or keyboard folio. However, they do have an alternative Word Processing app, which I will discuss later.
It is possible to convert handwriting to text on the reMarkable or export it as text in an email on both tablets, but the Supernote implements it better. In my experience, the Supernote’s handwriting recognition is more accurate than the reMarkable’s, but it can be exported as a TXT or DOCX file as well.
The Supernote also allows you to search your handwritten notes in real-time. To do this, you have to use a real-time recognition notebook (which you choose when it is created). There is also an option for a standard notebook, which doesn’t support handwriting recognition but does support layers. However, there is no way to convert the notebook type once you’ve made your choice – it would be better if you didn’t even have to make this choice and all options were available in a single notebook.
To create and edit DOC/DOCX files, the Supernote offers a handy word editing programme. With the use of stylus strokes, you can input text by drawing a plus sign and erase text by drawing a line through it, among other editing choices. Although it requires some getting accustomed to (and you shouldn’t use it to write entire pages), it is very fantastic for little document updates.
Several built-in gestures in the Supernote make note-taking easier – for example, if you rest two fingers on the screen, the stylus automatically switches to the selection eraser without you changing tools. Once you learn the shortcuts (and read the user manual a lot), you find yourself being able to do things much faster, even though the learning curve is steeper.
It has a minimalistic, zen-like feel to it, even though it does not have these additional note-taking features. I think that the reMarkable is more like a personal journal that you’d simply write and sketch in for your own personal enjoyment, whereas the Supernote is more like a professional tablet that integrates into your workflows.
It was difficult to choose between the Supernote and the reMarkable because both tablets are phenomenal note-taking tablets. Even though the Supernote has more features and is more versatile, I think the reMarkable just has the edge as a dedicated and focused note-taking machine with a variety of brush types.
In addition to reading and taking notes, some E-ink writing tablets offer additional functions.
I’ve already mentioned that the reMarkable comes with a dedicated keyboard folio, which can be used to type text directly into your notebooks. Supernote also supports Bluetooth keyboards, but there is a slight but noticeable lag when using them. With a Connect subscription, you can also type text notes using the companion app.
When it comes to additional software, the Supernote is a clear winner. In addition to a word processor (sort of), there is a Digest feature, as well as the Kindle e-reading app. A hidden web browser and a basic email client are also included. In other words, the Supernote is more like a modern-day Filofax than a note-taking device.
The Supernote allows you to take PNG screenshots of your current screen. Both the reMarkable and the Supernote have a screen share function so that other devices can view the tablet’s screen. reMarkable’s screen share implementation works over the Internet, but requires that the receiving device has the Desktop (Windows or Mac) companion app installed, so it doesn’t work with Android devices, for example. Supernote’s screen share can be accessed by any device with a web browser, but only works on a local network – screens can’t be transmitted over the Internet.
Supernote is more versatile than reMarkable (but not as versatile as Boox).
Service to customers
Out of all the e-ink tablet manufacturers I’ve dealt with, Supernote has the best customer support. Although they are a small team, they are highly passionate about the device they have created and seem to be genuinely interested in and valued by their customers. In fact, they prioritize their existing customer base over acquiring new ones.
Besides being environmentally conscious, they aim to ensure that their products last a long time and improve with regular software updates. They are the only e-ink manufacturer that publishes a roadmap of upcoming software features.
Overall, reMarkable provides good customer service, but occasionally it comes across as phoney and sales-focused. All aspects of their business are driven by sales and marketing, for instance, they are the only maker of subscription-based e-ink products that places some functionality behind a paywall. And some of their accessories seem to come at an unreasonable premium price, in my opinion. For instance, the Tab Ultra keyboard folio is only $110, so $200 for the keyboard folio seems a bit excessive.
However, if you run into any problems with your device, reMarkable provides decent customer support. They also offer a 100-day full money-back guarantee and free shipping with all orders. On the other hand, Supernote offers a 30-day return policy and shipping costs are included in the price. There is a 1-year warranty on both tablets.
reMarkable has good customer support, but Supernote has the best.
The Supernote vs Remarkable 2 are both excellent e-ink tablets, but they serve very different markets.
For me, the reMarkable is a digital replacement for a paper journal that would suit somebody who likes to write, sketch and doodle to help them reflect and ruminate. Moreover, its lack of functionality beyond note-taking can also be a blessing, as there are very few distractions to disrupt the flow of thoughts. It may also be worth considering for writers looking for a distraction-free digital typewriter that is easy to use.
Professional productivity devices like the Supernote are great for writing up meeting minutes or client notes, which can be quickly typed up into formal documents with handwriting recognition. The Supernote also has your email and schedule (calendar) close to hand, making it great for professional knowledge workers who need everything they need to carry out their work effectively.
I prefer the versatility of the Supernote, but the reMarkable is also a very nice e-ink tablet.
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